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280 Page Long Report on Christian Genocide Submitted to U.S. State Department

Nina Shea, a religious freedom expert at the Hudson Institute, joined a panel of experts supporting the findings of the “Genocide against Christians in the Middle East” report on March 10, 2016 at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. RNS photo by Adelle M. Banks.

The major report that makes the case that the terror campaign being waged against Christians by ISIS and its affiliates against Christians and other religious minorities meets the definition of genocide was released on Thursday at a news conference at the National Press Club by the Knights of Columbus (K of C) and In Defense of Christians (IDC). It was presented to the State Department yesterday.

The 280-page report includes substantial material not previously available, including the most comprehensive information to date on
Christians who have been killed, kidnapped, raped, sold into slavery, driven from their homes, and dispossessed, as well as on churches that have been destroyed. It also details interviews with witnesses to the atrocities that were collected during a Knights of Columbus fact-finding mission to Iraq last month.

The report is available online at www.kofc.org and www.StopTheChristianGenocide.org.

The report includes an executive summary, a legal brief outlining the case for a genocide declaration, and addenda including summaries of witness interviews, a database of crimes known to have been committed against Christians by ISIS and its affiliated groups, lists of Christians killed, estimates of the number of dead in various regions under ISIS control, statements by other governments and world leaders, and additional evidence of ISIS’ intent and actions against Christians that has been widely overlooked in the Western media.

“There is only one word that adequately, and legally, describes what is happening to Christians and other religious minorities in the Middle East. That word is genocide,” said Knights of Columbus CEO Carl Anderson presenting the report Thursday morning.

He pointed out that the UN Convention on genocide and U.S. statue that mirror it state that genocide occurs even when the destruction of the group is “in part.” He also noted that non-legal terms such as “ethnic” or “religious” cleansing or even legal terms such as “crimes against humanity” lack the adequate elements necessary to address the situation.

“While we believe this to be the most comprehensive report on this subject to date, covering incidents in Iraq, Syria, Libya, Egypt and Yemen, we continue to receive new reports and new evidence,” said Anderson. But with new reports pouring in every day, he cautioned: “It may only be the tip of the iceberg.”

ISIS’ magazine, Dabiq, has promised to destroy the “Crusader army,” a Christian reference, and has labeled Pope Francis “the crusader pope.” ISIS’ videos have encouraged the killing of priests – and Christians in general – as well.

Among the chilling statements in the magazine is this one: “We will conquer your Rome, break your crosses, and enslave your women… If we do not reach that time, then our children and grandchildren will reach it, and they will sell your sons as slaves at the slave market.”